Bishkek is the capital and the largest city of Kyrgyzstan. The economy in Bishkek is primarily agricultural with the mass amounts of fruits, vegetables and livestock providing a co-existing system of bartering in the outlying regions. Kyrgyzstan is in Central Asia, west of China. The climate is dry continental to polar in the high Tien Shan Mountains, subtropical in the southwest (Fergana Valley) and temperate in the northern foothill zone. The official languages are Kyrgyz and Russian. Kyrgyz is dominant in state circles and is more widely used in the south and in rural areas. Russian is preferred by most business partners are. Non-Russians will not be offended by the use of Russian, but Kyrgyz contacts will be impressed if a foreigner uses their language. The Cyrillic alphabet is commonly used for public notices, including road signs and street names. English is used In business circles and in the government. Hotels and restaurants frequented by foreigners usually have some English-speakers. Interpreters are readily available, but they are not always professional, their knowledge should be properly tested before important meetings. The main religions are Islam and Christianity. The economy of Kyrgyzstan was severely affected by the collapse of the Soviet trading block. Despite the backing of major Western lenders, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank, Kyrgyzstan has had economic difficulties following independence. Agriculture is an important sector of the economy in Kyrgyzstan. Kyrgyzstan is rich in mineral resources but has negligible petroleum and natural gas reserves. Kyrgyz society is relatively conservative, expatriates should take care to avoid appearing arrogant or dismissive of local customs or habits. Expatriate business dress is conservative, comprising suits. Businesswomen are expected to dress conservatively to avoid offending Islamic sensibilities, especially in rural and more conservative areas in the south. The security risk for expatriates in Kyrgyzstan is medium to high. Risks include petty crime, socio-economic and ethnic unrest, tensions between the south and north, corruption, and landmines in some areas bordering Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. Other risks include poor driving standards and road conditions, poor infrastructure, avalanches, landslides, and earthquakes. The currency of Kyrgyzstan is the Kyrgyzstanian Som (KGS). Medical facilities are not generally comparable to those of Western Europe and North America. Anthrax has been reported. The population of Bishkek is 937,000 (2016 est.), while the inflation rate is 3.6% (July 2017).
Cost Of Living
The cost of living for expatriates / professional migrants in In Bishkek, the cost of each basket, based on local prices, compared to the international average, is categorized follows (Exact cost of living percentages only available in personalised reports): Bishkek as at 1 July 2017 is low in comparison to other places in the world. 1) Alcohol (where available) & Tobacco: Very Low 2) Clothing: Very High 3) Communication: Very High 4) Education: Low 5) Furniture & Appliances: Average 6) Groceries: Very Low 7) Healthcare: Low 8) Household Accommodation: High 9) Miscellaneous: Very High 10) Personal Care: Very High 11) Recreation & Culture: Average 12) Restaurants Meals Out and Hotels: Very Low 13) Transport: Very Low Bishkek is for example -35.4% cheaper than Houston TX for groceries, 40% more expensive for household costs than Kuala Lumpur, and -15.7% cheaper for transport costs than Dubai. The hardship premium for Bishkek for an expat from Perth, is for example 30%, i.e. host location (Bishkek) premium of 40% minus home (Perth) location premium of 10%. Bishkek is ranked as a extreme hardship location. Want to know more about cost of living, hardship (quality of living) or expat salary in Bishkek? Register subscribe to your home location and Bishkek and run your personalised reports.